5 budget travel tips to save money on your next holiday

Being in Singapore means you have easy access to many nearby countries with rich and diverse cultures.

With budget flights aplenty, Singapore is the perfect base to explore Asia on the cheap. While travelling is seen as a luxurious activity or hobby by some, it doesn’t have to be so.

Here are five tips we have for you to help you travel in comfort without breaking the bank!

1. Fly on a budget airline

Singapore has some great budget flight airlines that go to a huge number of destinations. While it used to be that the budget airlines here only go round Asia, now we’ve got flights that go to Australia and even Greece!

Budget flights provide a low-frills way to go on a holiday and they aren’t really less comfortable compared to a full-service flight.

However, do take note of various fees that are not included in the cost you see on the screen. These include luggage fees, processing fees for credit cards and seat selection fees.

Want to save more on top of using a budget airline? If you fly frequent enough, consider credit card collaborations with some of these airlines, such as the Tigerair Platinum Credit card, or your Krisflyer card that allows you to redeem miles with Scoot and TigerAir.

2. Find accommodation using a comparison site

Use hotel comparison sites such as Agoda or Booking to source for your overseas lodging according to your budget. Not only that, you get to read up on user reviews as well, which provides a great way to gauge the quality of the hotels you are looking at.

If you are looking for something even cheaper, you can look up travel guides such as Lonely Planet which lists lodging according to budget, with lots of Bed & Breakfasts that are not even listed online. Other than that, Airbnb or Couchsurfing can be an alternative as well.

3. Make good use of your credit cards

The right credit card can provide a great deal of travel perks when making your bookings and even while you are overseas. For instance, travel cards earn you miles when you make your hotel and flight bookings with the cards, which you can then utilise for your next trips.

For example, HSBC Advance Visa Platinum card can earn you four miles for every dollar you spend on your dining, entertainment and online shopping expenses. Other cards like UOB PRVI Miles card or Citi Prestige MasterCard card can earn you two to 2.4 miles per $1 spent in countries outside of Singapore.

Prefer to get immediate perks? Then use a cashback card, such as the ANZ Optimum World Mastercard card which gives you unlimited five per cent cashback on travel bookings if you choose the travel category for the quarter.

The CIMB Platinum Mastercard is also a good choice as it earns you a 10 per cent cashback on travel-related purchases.

Some of these cards also offer cardholders free travel insurance, so remember to activate them before you go and you could save some money on travel insurance. (However, be sure to check that the coverage offered is sufficient and suitable for you.)

4. Eat on the cheap

It can be pretty easy to eat on a tight budget while travelling. The key is to stay away from places that are full of tourist and go where the locals eat. Don’t hesitate to visit local markets or even make a simple sandwich lunch with bread and ham from the supermarket.

Some places also offer discount food after dinner hours, so consider packing them to sit by the river for a romantic dinner with your partner.

There are also credit cards that offer regional discounts with dining partners — CIMB credit cards offer a number of discounts and privileges on dining in Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.

Similarly, Maybank credit cards also provide a number of travel discounts and regional dining privileges in Indonesia, Malaysia, Cambodia and Philippines.

5. Use a tourist pass

Getting a tourist pass can be of great value especially if you are staying for at least one to two weeks in a single country.

Other than providing cheaper public transportation options, some of these tourist passes also come with great perks, such as discount tickets to major tourist attractions and food outlets.

One such pass is the Paris Pass, which gives you free entry to more than 60 Paris attractions and tours, unlimited travel across central Paris on its various public transportation systems and also fast-track entry to popular attractions.

Amsterdam offers some similar travel passes for tourists as well, and Japan has its popular JR rail pass which gives you the convenience of travelling across the country on its famous bullet train at affordable prices.

6. Get sufficient insurance coverage

Travel insurance may seem like an additional cost on top of everything else, but it can save you lots of money if you are sufficiently covered, in the case of unexpected incidences like flight delays, flight cancellations, accidents, lost baggage, and more.

Ensure that you and your travel mates are sufficiently covered so that you can travel with a peace of mind.

ALSO READ: How you can become a digital nomad

This article was first published in ValueChampion.


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